Friday, October 12, 2012


Here's a "did you know?"

Straight from Wikipedia's mouth I find the following:

Beginning in 1984, when I first started compiling my family tree, never thinking it would turn into the biggest and longest adventure in my life, I thought it would be nice to find, frame and hang whatever pictures of my direct ancestors that I could beg, borrow or steal.    In genealogical terms, "direct" ancestors are those from whom you descend through blood lines, so to speak.  Going back from you, that would involve your mother and father, two sets of grandparents, four sets of great-grandparents, etc.  (Yes, it does get wieldly and cumbersome sometimes, so instead of saying great-great-great-grandpa we simply say third great-grandpa).  And of course when you get to pre-camera era you have to think in terms of finding paintings or drawings.

In 1984 we lived in a house with a long interior hall, and it was a perfect place to start my Rogue's gallery.  I consider that I have been very fortunate in finding as much as I have.  The latest picture, that of old Uberto Wright (1813-1890), came to me because several years ago in a blog I posted a plaintive statement (like a whine, more or less,) that I guess I'd never know what this kind, loving second-great grandpa looked like.  Before too much time passed, a fellow in Indiana, who was an authority on Church of Christ historical documents, contacted me and directed be to where a picture of Uberto could be found.  Needless to say, I am greatly indebted to him. 

As we got older, left the house for an apartment and continually work at downsizing for the future, the configuration of my Rogue's gallery has changed.  it's all in a clump on my office wall, and I need to point my finger at the pictures  that are related from generation to generation.

From my Rogue's gallery I can visually trace my Dobbins line like this:  Me->my father Scott Dobbins Jr.(1908-2001) ->Scott Dobbins Sr.(1876-1918) ->James Sellers Dobbins (1836-1902)-> James Alexander Dobbins(1806-1872)-> Robert B. Dobbins (1775-1852).  Beginning with my dad's picture, this is what my wall shows:

It's not only the Dobbins line that I have documented in photos but my mom's Ryland line and many other of the direct ancestors also, but none quite as dramatic as this.  In some cases, I've had to use a copy from a book.  One of the pictures I have was from a photograph taken of a picture hanging on the wall of a library in Stevens Point, Wisconsin.  The man in that photo is George Stevens, for whom Stevens Point was named and my third great grandpa.  So by hook or by crook I've managed to get twenty photos (two have been added since the picture was taken.

I suspect that no more will be found.  The crazy thing is that the Internet has made so much possible that that statement may not be true a few years from now.  Actually I should change it to read, "In my lifetime, I suspect..."  But even that might change.  Honestly, I never stop looking. 

Am I concerned about their future?  Of course.  I have an emotional investment in these photos.  In a sense I feel I gave birth to them.  The next generations coming behind me don't need the tactile and visual things that my generations wants.  So I've resigned myself to not having to know what will become of them when I die.  Like an ostrich with its head in the sand, I will simply avoid the issue and not worry about it.  If any of you have any bright ideas, let me know.

And incidently, they really don't, you know!

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